FURTHER THAN CHICAGO: day 35- 41


West Yellowstone, MT > Ennis, MT. 73 miles
Ennis, MT > Dillon, MT. 72 miles
Dillon, MT > Wisdom, MT. 70 miles
Wisdom, MT > Hamilton, MT. 74 miles
Hamilton, MT > Powell, ID. 86 mIles
Powell, ID > Syringa, ID. 73 miles
Syringa, ID > White Bird, ID. 62 miles
We left West Yellowstone, cold and sunny.
Flashing road hazard sign reading:
SLOW
15 CAR-BISON IMPACTS
THIS YEAR
One time we hit a deer in the upper peninsula of Michigan.
Deer are much smaller than bison.
Geoff’s knee started hurting, thanks to snow and one gear.
Stayed in a motel on the river, away from the building rainclouds.
Next day we continued north, along the western border of Montana to Dillon.
Starting to see lots of eastbounders.
Rode through two Ghost mining towns.
Spent 9 dollars on candy for novelty’s sake.
Stayed at the KOA campground for too much money, BUT the owner insisted that we have a free bundle of firewood which we went to bed without using.
McDonalds Breakfast found us on our way to Wisdom.
Ate lunch at a picnic table outside of a general store.
Chickens sat on the bench next to us.
Idaho is a free range state.
This means that you can move cattle anywhere, including the state highway.
And they do.
And they did.
We were warned about mosquitos in Wisdom.
Slept in the American Legion park with three eastbounders from Iowa.
Everything in Wisdom (meaning a restaurant and gas station) closed at 5 pm.
Asleep by 7 to the hum of mosquitos caught in the fly of the tent.
On the road early the next day chasing a hot breakfast.
Stopped at the Sula Country Store/Campground/Mini Golf Course/Restaurant/Truck Stop/Fishing Hole for breakfast.
This was the only building in Sula.
6 dollars and 25 cents for a huge breakfast, TOTAL.
We looked desperate.
So sunny all day.
Beautiful.
Stopped to fix Geoff’s flat among babbling brooks and snow capped mountain backdrops.
Geoff broke his bike.
Cracked hub cone locknut, means wheel doesn’t move.
Nancy, who lives down the street, gives us a ride 20 miles into Hamilton.
Where there’s virtually the only bike shop in Idaho, on route, aside from a further trek to Missoula.
We decide to get a motel in Hamilton, while the bike is worked on.
Showers.
Walk 5 miles to Dairy Queen.
Geoff’s bike is fixed, 22 dollars later.
Next day to Powell, Idaho.
Loscha River.
More National Forest.
More welcome sunshine.
No cellphone reception for days.
Guerilla camp in the National Forest campground because neither of us has the $8 cash for the Self Service Fee.
Up early to avoid the ranger (and to get to breakfast) at the pricey Loscha Lodge.
Eat with 50+, still-drunk-from-the-night-before, white water rafters.
Rowdy bunch.
Chat with the raft guides (my future job).
Pedal from there to Syringa (another rafting town).
May 17 to June 22, is rafting season.
Camp with a gaggle of eastbounders, on the Loscha River.
My oatmeal at breakfast was cooked in apple juice, and tasted bad.
Rode yesterday, through rain/sun to White Bird, ID.
Accidently stayed at the only campground that you have to pay for.
Waste.
Backtracked 3 miles to eat in town at the Silver Dollar Bar and Restaurant.
Ordered, then realized they only accept cash.
Geoff rode over a literal mountain pass to the only ATM in town (actually out of town).
Made it back in time to eat.
Oregon border in two-ish days.
Portland in ten-ish days.

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12 Comments

  1. Anne
    Posted June 15, 2009 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    Hi Sarah and Geoff! So glad to hear you’re alive and well. I was worried when there was no posting for a week and you’re in bear territory. Don’t scare me like that! Sorry to hear Geoff is having knee issues. If only you could find some arnica gel at a health food store, might help.
    I think this adventure would make a great story for a screenplay/movie. It makes me laugh and cry.
    Glad to hear you are so close to your destination. You can do it! Be safe!
    Love,
    Anne

  2. Nanny
    Posted June 16, 2009 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    I agree with Anne – you should write a book !!
    Love, Nanny, who wonders about oatmeal cooked in apple juice.

  3. Posted June 16, 2009 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    I warned you about the mosquitoes in Wisdom. :) Now I’m warning you about the heat in Hell’s Canyon. The 2+ hour climb out of the canyon was one of the most physically draining parts of our trip. My bike computer said it was 105 degrees (it read 111 on an earlier hill in eastern Oregon near Halfway, http://www.teamroadshow.com/gallery/view_photo.php?set_albumName=RSU&id=0145_G ). If we hadn’t been able to get some ice for our water bottles from a small cafe/gas station before we started up, I think I would have melted. :)
    The ride through the canyon isn’t so bad, since the water regulates the temps a bit. Sure is beautiful: http://www.teamroadshow.com/gallery/view_album.php?set_albumName=RSU&page=10.
    So is Sisters and McKenzie Pass. You’ve still got a lot of beautiful country ahead.

  4. Fouad
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    Geoff and Sarah glad that you folks are doing good (except the knee and hub….Everyone here at the shop says hello! Take care and we are all enjoying following you folks…..

  5. mike brown
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    been following you the whole way nuts post. i feel super boring in lansing. 10 days till portland..nice. rock on

  6. Aunt Julie
    Posted June 18, 2009 at 10:49 pm | Permalink

    Can you put Arnica on the hub cone lock nut?
    So glad to read that you finally have some good weather. The scenery looks fab – what a beautiful part of the country! I’ve been jonesin’ for your posts, have worn out my bookmark checking every day. Reading your blog today from your mom’s couch – Laura and I are in A2 for Father’s Day. See you next week!

  7. Posted June 19, 2009 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Sarah! Your biceps are HUGE! I got your postcard. I’m glad that you finally saw bison. Only one week left! Have fun!

  8. Ben VanGessel
    Posted June 19, 2009 at 9:44 pm | Permalink

    Geoff and Sarah,
    I too have been following you guys on your blog and it seems like you have had an awesome time on this trip. I am trying to get plans together to do a similar trip next summer. Any tips? Did you have a budget? Seriously, major props for doing this trip. Thanks for the excellent read.

  9. roy
    Posted June 21, 2009 at 2:17 am | Permalink

    you know , i’ve felt sorry for you guys a couple of times with all the bad weather and all , but then i chuckle and think i’d rather be there any day . it would still be fantastic !!! it’s getting rough keeping the 100 people i’ve told about your trip all up to speed , all are curious about everything. bought a lottery ticket so i can just be that chase car with ya.patagonia says hey and your going to have to live in a more country enviroment when you get back , he’s lucky he’s a fast learner.. very happy and envious for you guys love ya dad

  10. Anonymous
    Posted June 22, 2009 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Your uncle (Jim) sent me a link to your blog. Very cool. Quite an adventure.

  11. Jim and Jan
    Posted June 22, 2009 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    Sarah and Geoff, Wow you are so close to the end. What a great feeling you must have of accomplishment. We are enjoying following your travels and the photos are wonderful. I agree with the other folks–you should write a book, include your photos and hints and tips for others who dream about doing the same thing. Hope you’re home soon safe and sound. Love Grandma Jan and Grandpa

  12. Daniel
    Posted June 23, 2009 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    HELLO!!!!
    Well you will both be in my thoughts on the 27th for grand opening! can’t wait to have some rad pics of your trip up in the shop. Grand Rapids misses you both but loves the updates. Keep it up and have tons of fun!!!
    Much Love
    Daniel Koert

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